“We all filter down here”

This is a short post to bring together a few resources about the important vote taking place at the European Parliament on the proposed Copyright in the Digital Market Directive.

I’ve written about the issues I have with the proposed new publisher right (Article 11) here:

“this is a misguided attempt at stopping the change brought about technological changes, it’s the digital equivalent of trying to cover the sun with one finger. The publishing industry is in trouble, and they want legislators to save them by trying to get intermediaries to pay, when they should be changing their dying business models.

The effect of this is not to generate revenue, it is likely that the platforms will stop, and those affected will be the small publishers.”

And I’ve written about the highly problematic Article 13 here:

“What will end up happening is that the big players such as Facebook and Google will be able to comply as they already have pretty sophisticated mechanism in place, such as YouTube’s Content ID. But the real victims will be users and small intermediaries, who will not be able to compete with the large providers because they will not only have to provide filters, they will also have to provide the expeditious complaint mechanism that will bring back content if something goes wrong. This would make it prohibitive for small services, but most importantly for non-profit and other content providers to operate.”

And then I wrote about the JURI vote and its implications in this post.

There are quite a lot of resources about the vote, and we have witnessed an interesting split between copyright owners and technology platforms. Experts tend to be overwhelmingly against Articles 11 and 13. In a recent voting guide from copyright experts attending the EPIP conference, the following recommendations have been made:

  • that the text and data mining exception under Article 3 should apply to all lawful users (Schaake, in line with ITRE committee opinion and Commission Impact assessment option 4);
  • that new consumer facing exceptions for Freedom of Panorama and User-generated content are introduced (Article 5a and 5b, Schaake and Greens);
  • that Article 11 is deleted – and if there is no majority for deletion, the Comodini presumption be adopted (amendments by Schaake and Greens);
  • that Article 13 is amended to the text proposed by the IMCO Committee (preserving the integrity of the e-commerce directive) – and if there is no majority for the IMCO position, amendments by Schaake or Woelken be adopted.
  • A new Article 12a protecting sport event organizers was introduced at a late stage. This is completely unacceptable without conducting an Impact assessment. We recommend deletion.

While I would vote for deleting Art 13 altogether, I can live with the proposed IMCO Committee proposal. Art 11 should be sent back to the fiery chasm from whence it came.

Let us hope for a more balanced and rational copyright agenda, one that doesn’t throw the Internet into disarray.

Don’t forget to contact your MEP with the vote proposals.


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